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Riverstomp Returning in May 2018 After 4-Year Hiatus; New Dates Set

The poster for the most recent Riverstomp, held in 2014, is shown. Acts for the 2018 event are expected to be unveiled by the end of the year.

Riverstomp is back.

Organizer and promoter Travis Stallbories of Blisterfoot Productions has announced new dates for the 2018 event, the first to take place since Riverstomp went on hiatus following the fifth consecutive event in 2014.

The new dates are May 11-12, with campers departing on Sunday, May 13. Riverstomp 2018 will be held at Sparrow Hawk Camp, 21985 N Ben George Road, Tahlequah, Oklahoma.

The lineup is expected to be announced in the coming month, said Stallbories and Emerg Entertainment, which is co-promoting the festival.

“The RiverStomp Music Festival is a rowdy, blood-pumping, foot-stomping, good time with nothing but the best of the Ozark stomp-music genre,” says the fest’s Facebook page.

In its first five years, Riverstomp featured bluegrass, Americana, and roots-rock bands from around this region of the country. Previous bills have included Dirtfoot, Ben Miller Band, The Hillbenders, The Hooten Hallers, Henhouse Prowlers, Randy Crouch, Cletus Got Shot, Clusterpluck, Foleys Van, Charliehorse, Cutty Rye, Carrie Nation and the Speakeasy, Fast Food Junkies, Tyrannosaurus Chicken, Honky Suckle, Trashcan Bandits, and more.

That emphasis on the “wilder” side of the folk genres is not expected to change, organizers told

Stallbories, of Siloam Springs, has said the inspiration behind Riverstomp was his many trips to Winfield, which is officially named the Walnut Valley Festival. It takes place the third weekend in September, officially kicking off Wednesday and ending Sunday; its location in Winfield, Kansas, has grown to double as its widely used moniker among bluegrass fans and attendees.

Winfield’s popularity – it was founded in 1972 – and its emphasis on unplanned, all-inclusive jam sessions among hired performers and attendees mean that the event is usually packed with thousands of attendees set up days before the scheduled performers officially begin. The billed acts camp in the same areas that the attendees do, further encouraging interaction and musical improv among guests and hired performers.

Riverstomp’s location, the campground at Sparrow Hawk Camp, includes 1 mile of riverfront and over 50 acres of camping area – but with a new-and-improved set-up, since much of the grounds’ facilities were wiped out in the two 100-year floods that have struck since 2014’s event.

Tent camping at Sparrow Hawk Camp is on a first-come, first-served basis; guests have the option of either modern campsites with modern restrooms, showers, and electrical/RV hookups, or more rudimentary campsites with only picnic tables and trash cans.

The main camping area also features playground equipment including slides, swings, trampolines, a water log roll, volleyball court, and more.

An on-site outfitter offers boat rentals for float trips down the Illinois River in northeastern Oklahoma. All float trips are located in the Sparrow Hawk Primitive Area, known for its high bluffs and scenic remoteness. For photos and more information about float trips, visit Sparrow Hawk Camp on the state parks website.

For more information about Riverstomp, including vendor opportunities, performance and artist opportunities, and more, see the About Us section on Riverstomp’s Facebook page.